Scientists in the United States reported on Wednesday they had uncovered another 28 genes that are implicated in cancer, opening up a new avenue for drugs that could target the spread of the disease.
The genes are part of a complex molecular process that silences a key gene, called Fas, that orders a cancerous cell to kill itself.
With Fas de-activated, tumours proliferate unchecked.
The 28 genes, called Ras epigenetic silencing factors (RESEs), are described in the latest issue of the British journal Nature by a team led by Michael Green of the University of Massachusetts Medical School.
By interfering with the Fas-silencing pathway, a drug could brake or stop the spread of cancerous cells, it is hoped. – (Sapa)
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